Now that Christmas and the holidays are over, you have plenty of options for disposing of your tree. Here are seven ways to recycle or reuse your tree as a better alternative to the landfill.
Check with your city or town government for Christmas tree drop-off areas, which are often set up near recycling centers. Here, the trees are typically sent through a chipper to be used as mulch for parks and green areas. Some cities have designated Christmas tree pickup days and times, so make note of those. This removes the burden and mess of transporting it yourself.
Chop up your tree and use it as fuel for your fireplace or fire pit. While the needles will dry out quickly, you may need to wait a few months before the log is dry enough to burn.
Put the old tree to work in your own yard as mulch. Just remove your branches and shake off the dead needles. The needles won't collect mold and they decompose slowly.
Use your miter saw or hacksaw to cut your Christmas tree trunk into coasters and trivets. Make sure you sand down the surfaces and stain and seal them before using to prevent sap from leaking. You can also use them as edging borders for gardens and walkways.
If you've got a lake or pond on your property, consider dumping your tree into it. That old pine or spruce provides a natural and decomposing habitat for fish and will attract algae for them to eat. Some game and fishery departments will offer a drop-off service for trees that they will then use in community lakes and ponds. Just remember to remove all ornaments, hooks, and decorations before dropping it off.
Beach communities that have been decimated by storms and hurricanes have turned to old Christmas trees to help and restore sand dunes. Christmas trees and their needles retain sand and vegetation against strong winds and provide cover for birds in the winter.
Rent a wood chipper and invite your friends and neighbors to bring over their Christmas trees for a wood-chipping party. Distribute the chips to everyone to use as mulch and enjoy the sights and sounds of a chipper in action. Always follow safety guidelines when using a wood chipper. And don't get any ideas from Fargo.